2004 BMW 5 Series 525d M Sport Touring 2.5 turbo diesel from UK and Ireland


Poor economy!!


Rear tale gate control module needed to be replaced as this was causing problems with the central computer and causing the airbag warning to be displayed.

General Comments:

The car is generally very good apart from the lack of economy.

Previously owned a 330d Sport and managed to get 42mpg regularly. When I decided to look at changing my car for a larger booted one, due to the arrival of a baby, I thought I would stay with the manufacturer I have trusted for my past 3 vehicles.

Originally the car was fantastic I was getting 47mpg until it went in for the warranty work to be carried out for replacing the boot opening module. BMW updated all the software in the car, which must have also updated the ECU mapping because now I struggle to return 37mpg. BMW claim that there is nothing wrong with the car.

It has seriously tainted my view of the blue and white propeller.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 16th November, 2006

3rd Feb 2007, 15:59

Silly Question, but have you taken the car back to the dealer and explain this to them? Have them explain exactly what they did and how it could effect MpG.

7th Jun 2007, 06:21

I believe he has, and "the response was the car is perfectly fine and nothing was wrong" as he stated!

18th Jan 2009, 19:27

As with a doctor, get a second opinion. The line: "That's the way it's supposed to be," should be gold plated in every dealership. They use it every time they don't want to fix a service department error. Take it to a hostile dealership and you'll find them happy to repair whatever the first one mucked up, with plenty of complaints about "those other dealers."

2004 BMW 5 Series 530i from North America


One amazing ride!!


The passenger side cup-holder broke at about (?) and the dealer fixed it with no charge.

General Comments:

The car handles like a dream. My Mercedes E320 handles like a boat compared to my 530i. Along with great handling, it rides very smooth and is very quiet and comfortable.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 4th January, 2006

2004 BMW 5 Series 530i SE 3.0 petrol from UK and Ireland


A well built, fast executive saloon spoilt only buy its run-flat tyres


Nothing at all.

General Comments:

OK, let me cover the looks first. Outside. The car is VERY sensitive to colour. If you're going to buy one, look at one in the colour you're going to buy, not from the BMW brochure! Mines in metallic black and it looks great. The standard alloys are also horrid to look at and the 16-inch rims don't look right.

Inside, the seats (black leather in my case) are far better than the previous 5-series. They offer more support in all areas. The cabin is also more roomy, especially in the rear. What has gone backwards is the dashboard. It all works, I just don't really like it, which brings me on to...

I-Drive! I'm sold on it. You need to read the manual and sit on the drive for 30-minutes to "play" with it. But then is very easy to use. In honesty, once you have set-up all your preferences (door locking, light delays, steering wheel buttons...) you rarely touch most of it.

As with the outside, the inside is colour sensitive, and some of the combinations are horrid!

The build and quality of materials are excellent, better than the last model in just about every respect (except the headlight switch if I'm picky (I never use it as it's got auto headlights anyway!) ).

Driving the car is a joy. The 3-litre petrol engine and the 6-speed autobox work brilliantly together. It pulls hard at any speed. Changes up and down by the auto, in normal mode, are smooth and bearly noticeable. In sports mode, it's even swifter, but changes are a bit more noitceable. It has got the "manual" steptronic mode, but I never use it (unless very bored). The autobox simply does a better job than me.

On the economy side, around town it does 26mpg. On a recent 200-mile motorway run it did 32-mpg (at 85-mph). If you REALLY boot it, it will easily drop to the low 20's. I tried a Mercedes E-class before buying the 530, and it eats that alive in performance terms. I also tried a new Lexus GS300. That was smoother and quieter, but it could not match the BMW's engine for grunt.

The level of grip is also excellent, but it comes at a high price. The car is fitted with 18-inch rims (they look great) and run-flat tyres. These are the real downside of the car. They make the ride very hard (and I don't have the Sports Suspension) compared to the previous car. I can live with that. What I can't live with is that they make the car feel very nervous on the road. I think its due to the lack of flex in the tyre, it just makes it skip on white-lines, pot holes etc. that normal tyres flex and soak up. I'm sure it will grip and grip, it just doesn't feel like it. They are also very expensive to replace. I've been quoted £230 for a front and £250 for a rear (that's each!). I'm going to try to replace them with "normal" tyres and see if that improves things.

The only other disappointment is the SatNav (I have the business one). It does not have a fine enough level of granularity (ie complete postcode entry) and can pick some well strange routes if you have to vary off the planned route (farm tracks and 18-inch low profile tyres are not a good mix!).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th November, 2005

17th Jan 2006, 10:59

I have a 535d M Sport Touring and could not agree more that the ride is appalling. The rest of the car is very impressive, including the I Drive. Have you had the opportunity to fit proper tyres, if so, has there been any significant improvement.

19th Feb 2006, 09:18

Not yet, the front tyres are just about in need of replacement so I'm going to start shopping around etc. I'll post back when I've changed them.

26th Oct 2006, 05:50

OK, the tyres lasted a lot longer than I expected! Anyway I'm afraid to say I bottled it and put another set of Run-flats on it. But this time I've gone for Bridgestones (the originals were Dunlops). The rides no better, but it does not seem to tramline as much.

Nothing else to report - its been faultless so far although it does seem to burn a little oil.

28th Jun 2011, 03:37

That's weak, you should have ditched the R/F tyres, much better without. Weak, weak, weak.